Keystone update – Oct 2015

Detailed below is an update on our projects as at October 2015.

Trust Update Report

15th October 2015


Breckland Advice Project  / META

The collaboration between Keystone and the Citizen’s Advice Bureaux (CAB) on the Breckland Advice Project has now completed its full project term.  It has been disappointing to all concerned that we were unable to secure any continuation funding.  The META project has been running in Keystone for over 10 years and it is a sad loss to our delivery service.  Over the coming months we will be looking to re establish this service in some form.

Keystone recently presented research from the Migrant Workers Advice study to Leeway (Domestic Violence & Abuse Services) and a Norfolk Migrants Healthwatch Q & A session at the Migrant Worker Steering Group hosted by the East of England Local Government Association.

Contact: Jonathan Walker


Stop Smoking Service

Our trainers have successfully completed a mandatory workshop held by SmokeFree Norfolk as part of the current partnership arrangement.  This further supports a new initiative with Keystone hosting Very Brief Advice (VBA) training sessions for local health professionals, as part of the development of the nationwide Stoptober campaign.

Contact: Jonathan Walker



The Reaching Communities funded three year Supporting Minority Communities project came to an end last month.  Realise Futures worked with Keystone as a delivery partner in Suffolk to deliver English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) provision.  Thirty students, representing many of the local migrant communities, successfully attended the latest course which provided learning at pre-entry and entry level.

Contact: Jonathan Walker


Recovery through Art Café

The group is progressing extremely well. My main priority has been to attract more people to the group and this is proving successful as we have seen a steady increase in numbers.

The group are in the process of creating a 2ft x 18ft mural to celebrate the Tour of Britain coming through Thetford. We are also working with Farrans Construction to paint large sections of their hoardings around the new riverside development. This is a fantastic opportunity for us to showcase the group. We are also preparing for our exhibition in January at the Jack Pilling Gallery. Showing their work publically in this way gives the participants a real sense of pride and enables them to feel they are giving something positive back to the community.

The biggest threat to the project at the moment is continuation of funding. We have various applications progressing but it is nothing is guaranteed.

Contact: Holly Sandiford



The focus will continue on developing practical life skills for younger members and potential future career related opportunities for older members.  The next session will be delivered by the LEGO Brickologist team at the end of the month focusing on a fun science, technology and engineering workshop.

Contact: Jonathan Walker


Abbey Neighbourhood Centre

Regular ongoing bookings include; Senior’s (Bingo) Club, ASD Youth Group, Zumba the Recovery Art Café, A*spire and a local church group.

Contact: Ricky Aylott


St John’ Community Centre

Weekday bookings at St John’s Community Centre have now started to pick up again after a slight dip over the summer although there continues to be a steady stream of bookings for weekend birthday parties. Our new ‘Open Thursdays’ sessions commence on Thursday 15th October and will offer visitors access to the WiFi at the Centre as well as giving local people an opportunity to look around and see what the Centre has to offer. Community Steppers Double Dutch skipping club received a Locality Grant to enable their sessions to run at the Centre until April 2016 and Lovell continue to use the Main Function Room (with catering from Café One) on a regular basis for their staff training events. Kennett Sports are holding Pre-Football at the Centre every Monday morning which is football development for children of pre-school age.

Contact: Leigh Driver


The Brandon Centre

A meeting of the Brandon Centre Operational Group, comprising service managers and front line staff from all stakeholder organisations, was well attended in September. A number of positive comments were made with regard to staff and client satisfaction with both the Centre and its management.

The week-long closure of Bury Road (the main route into Brandon from Bury St Edmunds that feeds both the Centre and the main public car park alongside) did cause some disruption to services but we were able to warn local residents of the impending works, many of whom had not previously been aware of the issue.

Live Well Suffolk Continue to use the 1:1 room on Mondays for their client surgeries and Suffolk Mind operate a drop-in service from the Meeting Room on the same day. Children’s Centre use of the Meeting Room has also increased over the past few weeks with a number of other Suffolk County Council staff making use of the space. Members of Forest Heath District Council, Suffolk County Council, Brandon Safer Neighbourhood Team, Brandon Town Council, Brandon Country Park and Keystone gathered at the Centre in September to judge a children’s poster competition with the theme of conveying a positive message about Brandon, the results of which will be displayed around the town in the near future.

Contact: Leigh Driver


Innovation Centre

During July to September there were 183 conferences held and attended by 2,009 delegates.  During this period 5 new companies booked meetings with us.

The virtual office facility Keystone Innovation Centre recently started to offer now has 5 clients taking up various options.

Currently only the 3rd Floor is unoccupied, and the current building occupancy is 68%.

The current tenants in the Keystone Innovation Centre on the First Floor are: Hilton Care, Manorcourt Care, F1 Training, Dalcour MacLaren, Hayward Miller, ABSA Environmental Waste Systems & Baxter Healthcare Ltd. On the Second Floor are: PeoplePlus(A4e), Anglia Healthcare, Catch Up, Catch 22 & Fosters Solicitors.

Contact: Denise Petrie


Enterprise Factory

At the end of June the building occupancy stands at 83%.

Vacant offices are office 1, 3 and 4 on the 1st floor are still advertised for rental. All units are rented.

Our 12 Tenants at the moment are: Atkins Thetford, Freeze Creative Design, Carl Cox, Craig Business Solutions, Giant Imaging, Green Ventures Bikes, Keep Calm Network Ltd, Norfolk Fire Rescue Youth Development, O.C Training, Property Masters, Youth offending team, Willow Property Maintenance, Phil Hill Training.

Contact: Maria Schepers



Keystone Green Bikes

We sell:-

  • Refurbished bicycles
  • New Bikes
  • Electric bikes.
  • Repair service
  • Accessories including lights, locks, tyres and tubes

We are open Monday to Friday from 10.00 am to 5.00pm at 39 Brunel Way Thetford IP24 1HP.

We accept donations of bikes from the public.

During the period due to the bikes being known as many things we have settled on Keystone Green Bikes.  There was a lot of confusion around green ventures, people still think we done furniture, and ventures doesn’t really give the impression of a bike shop.  The logo now used is this one below.

KeystoneGreenBikes LOGO 2015_Long

The frontage of the shop has been added to with the hanging of yellow bikes on the wall, and the bikes left from the Tour of Britain now line the fence to attract people to the fact there is a shop there.

During the period we have become stockists for VOLT electric bikes.

The Tour of Britain event on 12th September went well with positive comments and a good turnout in the Town.  A big THANK YOU to Mark Allison, Monique Stevenson, Jim Strutton and Alan Beard for all their support over the weeks leading up and on the day.  There are several pictures of the event on our website.  There was also plenty of press coverage over the weeks leading up and after the event.


We were featured on radio Norfolk as part of an bike art event in Kings gardens in August as part of the build up to The Tour of Britain coming to the town.

Over the coming weeks the mural that was commissioned and being completed by the Art recovery project will be unveiled at the Bike Shop.

Drake school have been working on a project using wheels from us which will be displayed at the shop when they have finished their project.

Contact: Jim Strutton


Café One

Is open to the public from 8.30 am to 4.30 pm Monday to Friday at the Keystone Innovation Centre, Croxton Road, Thetford, IP24 1JD

We also offer external catering for local businesses

We continue to add hot meal options to the café menus and the feedback from the customers has been positive. With winter coming the soups will be returning and we hope to also offer warming meal options.

The later opening of Café One is proving to be successful with many people taking advantage of the late afternoon opening.

On Friday 25th September we saw Café One hosting a MacMillan Cancer Support ‘World’s Largest Coffee Morning’ event. Many cake donations were made by staff and suppliers. In total the event raised £201.51.


20150925_102624Some of the cakes donatedBig Thank you to our staff who organised the event

Contact: Nicola McKenzie